"In the backyard of the [Royal Academy of Fine Arts] school was this little building, on the verge of collapsing. You would have to very carefully go over the stairs, because if you took one mis-step, you could literally push your feet through them. It was almost dangerous. So I think that the whole thing melted well together. It was the switch from the 80s to 90s, the reaction on excess with minimalism and deconstruction, the first appearance of grunge. So that feeling of romanticism, together with the history, the building and the run down corridors with the statues, it really did make a big impact on how you formed your visual language. I really think there was something quite dark and magical about it, matching perfectly the zeitgeist of the period."

— Willy Vanderperre
Comme des garçons, 1988
“Of course there are business as well as creative reasons for the Comme des Garçons style. The point of a remarkable interior is to evoke such a strong sense of identity that even the most humble purchase - a belt or a pair of socks - brings with it some of that underlying identity. The contrast between the textures of the garments, hanging on neatly spaced racks that read like sculptural elements and the cement wall is all part of the establishment of the uniqueness of the Comme des Garçons label. To put too many garments on display can diminish their impact, hence the company’s first Paris shop had on show less than half the stock a conventional high-fashion retailer would have installed. In environments with so few distractions, the customer can hardly fail to be aware of the subtle qualities of the clothes.”
from rei kawakubo and comme des garçons

Comme des garçons, 1988

“Of course there are business as well as creative reasons for the Comme des Garçons style. The point of a remarkable interior is to evoke such a strong sense of identity that even the most humble purchase - a belt or a pair of socks - brings with it some of that underlying identity. The contrast between the textures of the garments, hanging on neatly spaced racks that read like sculptural elements and the cement wall is all part of the establishment of the uniqueness of the Comme des Garçons label. To put too many garments on display can diminish their impact, hence the company’s first Paris shop had on show less than half the stock a conventional high-fashion retailer would have installed. In environments with so few distractions, the customer can hardly fail to be aware of the subtle qualities of the clothes.”

from rei kawakubo and comme des garçons


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